Foreign Minister not authorized to return asylum seekers to Croatia

State Secretary Eric van der Burg (Justice and Security) cannot extradite two asylum seekers from Egypt and Algeria to Croatia without an investigation, the Administrative Jurisdiction Division of the State Court ruled on Wednesday. The Foreign Minister cannot assume that Croatia will respect the European Convention on Human Rights.

Van der Burg wants to return an Egyptian and an Algerian asylum seeker to Croatia. The two men applied for asylum there for the first time. On the basis of European agreements, Croatia must process both asylum applications. However, the two do not want to return, because they believe that Croatia does not respect the European Convention on Human Rights.

Although Member States of the European Union assume that all Member States are committed to human rights, there may sometimes be grounds for further investigation. The Council of State has decided that Van der Burg must in this case investigate the “current facts and circumstances” in Croatia. The foreign minister must investigate whether Egyptian and Algerian asylum seekers can apply an asylum procedure when returning to Croatia.

According to the State Council, there have been so-called push-backs at the Croatian external border “on a large scale and for a long time”. According to the Council of State.

Violence, pushback and theft on the Croatian border

In October 2021, it was announced that the Croatian Intervention Police had committed the illegal deportation of asylum seekers. In doing so, the KRO-NCRVs wrote, among other things, that they would “literally bypass the border” so that refugees do not have a chance to start an asylum procedure. needle and the community of journalists lighthouse reports† Applications are also funded with European currency.

According to research platforms, Croatia has developed multiple ways of dealing with pushbacks by forcibly pushing migrants back to the EU’s external borders. Some of these roads would lead to a dead end on the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina.

“These roads can be used to protect the border, but they are also dead ends that are openly used to push people over the border,” says Klaas van Dijken. lighthouse reportsI

Journalists looked at satellite images, interviewed refugees and filmed with hidden cameras on the Croatian border. These images showed masked people chasing violent cross-border refugees. Their property would also be taken from them.

Source: NU